Last night, a member of my household was making dinner. This particular dish required toasted bread to be cut up and sprinkled over the top before it went into the oven. I watched the cook cut up the bread and was fascinated by the symmetry. Each tiny piece of bread was the same as its neighbour. Amazing!
I jokingly ribbed this family member and asked them “Did they really need to make the toast THAT symmetrical?”. As someone who is not prone into detail, I thought it was a bit over the top. However, the cook said, “Well, if I don’t make the toast all the same size then, when it goes in the oven, some bits will be toasted and some bits will be burnt”.
It was a good answer and provided a helpful metaphor.
Detail, when it has a purpose, can play a critical role in success. However, if we're spending time going into the detail when really it doesn't help us achieve a better outcome then perhaps it's worth asking:
“Is this good enough?”